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Georgia condemns terrorist attack in Istanbul Airport

By Tea Mariamidze
Thursday, June 30
A gun and bomb attack on Istanbul Ataturk international airport took place on June 28. Three armed attackers opened fire near a terminal entrance and blew themselves up after police opened fire at them. According to BBC, the attack killed 41 people and injured 239.

No Georgians were injured during the attack according to Deputy Foreign Minister Davit Jalaghania, who called on Georgians in Istanbul to keep away from crowded places.

"We continue permanent and close contact with the relevant structures of Turkey, as well as with Georgian citizens there. I would urge them to refrain from being in crowded public places," the Deputy FM stated.

According to Jalaghania, a hotline started functioning in Georgia’s General Consulate in relation to the blast occurred in Istanbul Ataturk Airport, where Georgian citizens can receive consular assistance.

Consul General to Turkey Irakli Asashvili reported that all Georgian citizens have been taken from Ataturk airport to hotels. According to him, about 100 Georgian citizens were moved to hotels with the assistance of the Turkish authorities, and all of them are safe.

Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili released a statement in which he strongly condemned terrorism.

“I am appalled at this brutal act aimed against innocent people. The world must come together to put an end to this brutality. During this time of grief, our thoughts and prayers are with the Turkish people and the Government of Turkey," the statement reads.

President Giorgi Margvelashvili also expressed concern over the recent developments in Istanbul.

“I express my condolences to the families of the deceased and I express strong solidarity to the Turkish government and the Turkish people in the fight against terrorism,” he stated.

Furthermore, the Interior Ministry of Georgia also released a statement which says preventive measures are constantly being carried out due to the existing risk factors.

"The patrol police control checkpoints at the country's borders and airports ensure public security, as our Border Police personnel are at full readiness. The Border Police tightly control the so-called green line of the state border,” reads the statement.

Istanbul's Ataturk International Airport resumed functioning the day after the attack. According to the International Airport of Georgia, all cancelled flights to Turkey are operating as usual.

Prime Minister of Turkey Binali Yildirim says early signs point towards the attack having been carried out by the Islamic State (IS), but no-one has so far claimed responsibility.